JetFlash 700 Flash Drive is SLOW for USB 3.0 but faster Than Old USB 2.0
May 24, 2012 (Updated Jun 14, 2012)
Review by Thomas Wikman
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Slick design, hard casing, nice blue LED.
Cons:Slow for a USB 3.0 flash drive, lanyard hole useless, freeware not a big bonus.
The Bottom Line:
USB 2.0 flash drives is a thing of the past. However, check the speed of your USB 3.0 flash drive. The JetFlash 700 is not fast for a USB 3.0.
In my opinion one of the most important features of a “regular” flash drive is the read-speed and the write-speed. Other important features are shape and design, interface (USB 2.0/3.0), storage capacity, robustness, and compatibility. Many flash drives also come with software, encryption, and password protected storage. I don’t consider that terribly important in a “regular” flash drive. However, if I buy a flash drive that I would be using for storing confidential data or sensitive data, then hardware encryption, password protection, active anti-malware, etc, would be the most important features. Such “specialty” flash drives (like the Ironkey) are expensive.
Recommend this product?
I bought the JetFlash 700 8GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive as a regular flash drive. Since this is a USB 3.0 compatible flash drive one of my first questions is; is this drive fast enough to take advantage of the USB 3.0 transfer speed?
JetFlash 700 8GB Flash Drive Read and Write Speed
The maximum theoretical transfer speed of USB 2.0 is 60MB/s but in practice you can’t get more than roughly 30MB/s. The maximum theoretical transfer speed of USB 3.0 is 5,120MB/s, which is a lot more. However, what matters in the end is the actual read-speed and write-speed.
The USB 2.0 flash drives I own have a read-speed and write-speed between 1MB/s and 20MB/s. I know there are some very fast USB 2.0 flash drives with a read/write speed of up to 30MB/s, but you can’t get beyond that due to the limitations of the interface. Many computers still have the old USB 2.0 ports and some hard disks of fairly new laptops have read/write speeds of 20/30MB/s. If you use a fast flash drive with a laptop with a slow hard disk you are not going to get the best speed. As in traffic, the slowest guy in the lane decides the pace, whether it is the interface (USB 2.0/3.0), the other device (laptop hard disk), or the flash drive.
The USB 2.0 interface is relatively slow, but so are some hard drives, and USB 2.0 ports are still pretty common. Therefore USB 2.0 flash drives are still going to have a value. However, USB 3.0 ports are becoming common. My one year old Asus K53T has a USB 3.0 port and its hard disk speed is 65/60 MB/s (read/write). In addition USB 3.0 flash drives typically get you the best speed possible out of your USB 2.0 port, which is not the case with most USB 2.0 flash drives. Basically USB 2.0 is out, or soon out, and USB 3.0 is in. It is basically the same thing as USB 1.0/1.1 versus USB 2.0 some years ago.
Using Chrystal Disk Mark I measured the following when connecting the Jet Flash 700 8GB Flash Drive to the USB 3.0 port on my Asus K53T.
Sequential Read Speed (1GB blocks): 57.74 MB/s
Sequential Write Speed (1GB blocks): 13.16 MB/s
Using Chrystal Disk Mark I measured the following when connecting the Jet Flash 700 8GB Flash Driveto the USB 2.0 port on my Asus K53T.
Sequential Read Speed (1GB blocks): 30.85 MB/s
Sequential Write Speed (1GB blocks): 13.25 MB/s
However, when I did the same test using my Patriot SuperSonic 32GB USB3.0 Flash Drive I got:
Sequential Read Speed (1GB blocks): 129.1 MB/s
Sequential Write Speed (1GB blocks): 85.24 MB/s
Sequential Read Speed (1GB blocks): 31.47 MB/s
Sequential Write Speed (1GB blocks): 32.93 MB/s
As you can see the Patriot SuperSonic 32GB USB3.0 Flash Drive is much faster and the write-speed of the Jet Flash700 8GB Flash Drive does not do USB 3.0 justice. Whether you use a USB 3.0 port or a USB 2.0 port does not matter, which is not a good feature for a USB 3.0 flash drive.
Design of the JetFlash 700 8GB Flash Drive
The design of the Jet Flash 700 8GB Flash Drive is very typical. The dimensions are 2.7 x 0.75 x 0.33 inch or 69.5 X 19 X 8.5 mm and the weight is 10.3 grams (0.37 ounce), which makes it somewhat light weight. It is not a cap-less design and the cap cannot be attached to the back of flash drive when taken off. The lanyard hole is small and long/wide, which makes the lanyard hole almost impossible to use. You can certainly not put it on a key-ring. It does have a nice semi-hidden blue LED.
The overall style and design is nice. It is glossy black, smooth, slick, and it has rounded edges. It is a good looking flash drive. I do not know what the housing is made of but it is hard and feels metallic. It is not the cheap plastic crap most flash drives are made of. Therefore I assume it is robust. However, I have not run it through the dish washer or used a hammer on it yet.
JetFlash 700 8GB Flash Drive Features
The JetFlash 700 8GB USB 3.0 flash drive is compatible with USB 2.0 and USB 3.0. As is says in the name the capacity of the flash drive is 8.0GB, which is on the small side for my purposes. However, the same drive also come in a 16GB and a 32GB version. When using it with USB 3.0 it is compatible with Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, and Linux. When using it with USB 2.0 it is also compatible with Windows 2000 and Mac OS. It does not cost too much. I bought it for $20.00 at a store and you can get it for less. It does not have a read-speed or write-speed rating on the package or on the web site, which is a good indicator that they don’t want to advertise it. In general, watch out when this rating is missing. This flash drive is manufactured in China.
The JetFlash 700 8GB Flash Drive the Downloads
With the JetFlash700 8GB Flash Drive you get three free downloads; JF Format Tool, which is used to format the drive as FAT32 or NTFS, Transcend Elite, which is used for backup, encryption and restore, and JF700 Recovery Tool which stores data on-line. The JF Format Tool is just an ancient MFC executable, the JF700 Recovery Tool is a simple on-line backup/recovery executable featuring no help or explanation as to what it is doing. Transcend Elite on the other hand is a more advanced application that you actually install and it has a useful interface. These applications are free but when you download them you have to give them your email for the purpose of future Spam. You cannot uninstall the applications and the JF700 Recovery Tool recovery tool deleted all content on first use. Well nothing had been uploaded yet so it recovered back to nothing I guess, but that was still unexpected. There were no options and only one button to press and no information. I have not used these apps very much but they seem to be cheap dumb freeware and not much of a bonus.
Summary and Conclusions
This is a slick looking seemingly robust flash drive that is faster than most USB 2.0 flash drives. However, for a USB 3.0 flash drive it is pretty slow. The lanyard hole is nearly useless and the overall design quite typical and not very practical. On the other hand it did not cost much. Overall I can recommend this flash drive but very reluctantly. I give it a rating of three stars.
To check out the other super fast Patriot SuperSonic 32GB USB3.0 Flash Drive click here.
To read about an even faster USB 3.0 flash drive click here.
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